PH Recreation haFun set for June 24-26 in Fort Gratiot Township
By Barb Pert Templeton
Seeing dozens of cars, classic and otherwise, cruising the streets in Fort Gratiot Township and Port Huron on a Friday night in late June has become a regular date on the summer calendar. The popular event is followed by a car show on Saturday, hosted in a festive atmosphere that includes food, beverages, music, and fireworks. There’s also a carnival at the Birchwood Mall Friday through Sunday.
Formally referred to as ‘Blue Water Cruise Weekend’ the event is hosted by Fort Gratiot Township and Fort Gratiot Business Association with assistance from plenty of dedicated sponsors, according to Fort Gratiot Community Development Director Sharon Wilton.
The 2020 cruise weekend was canceled due to the pandemic but all the activities returned on a smaller scale in June 2021 although a rainy weekend kept many car enthusiasts away. Wilton’s hoping the weather cooperates for the 2022 show including seeing past attendees from across the Canadian border finally able to return to the township for the car weekend.
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“Now that the border is open, we are hoping our Canadian friends come over again, a lot of them would come over in the past,” Wilton said.
The weekend begins on Friday, June 24 with the ninth annual car cruise, which welcomes any and all vehicles, they don’t have to be a collector’s item. Signing up at Kraft Road at M-25 cruisers are invited to travel along Pine Grove Ave. and 24th Ave. in Port Huron & Fort Gratiot.
The participants will visit eight locations in Fort Gratiot and at each pit stop, cruisers will be given some free swag plus a sticker to place on a Cruise Card, passed out at the first stop. After collecting all the stickers, drivers are asked to turn them in at the final stop, Country Style Market Place, to be entered into a drawing for gift cards.
Then on Saturday, a car show will be hosted at Birchwood Mall from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. where classic cars will be on display. Registration is $15 per car and goody bags and dash plaques will be given to the first 200 entrants.
Dubbed the ‘Keith Peterson Memorial Car Show’, it was started 15 years ago and is named in honor of the late Keith Peterson, a founding member of the Ft. Gratiot Business Association and at one time, the group’s president. He was the owner, along with his wife, Darlene, of Cheap Charlie’s in Fort Gratiot and loved classic cars and the annual car cruise.
There will be live music, trophies and door prizes at the car show and Wilton said attendance at the event usually includes between 150 to 200 cars and more than 1,000 spectators.
Two additions to the car show this year include the Miss Blue Water Bombshell Pinup Contest and a Kid’s Zone. Wilton said members of the group, Blue Water Bombshell Ladies will pose with cars in various costumes, and spectators can take photos with them and vote on their favorites. The Kid Zone promises fun for the young and goody bags will be given to the first 75 children at the event, Wilton said.
The eight pit stops for the cruise on Friday night are Mercy Village, Culvers, Jersey Mike’s Subs, Meijer’s, Moran Chevrolet, Xfinity, Mcdonald’s, and Country Style Market.
For more information visit the Blue Water Cruise Weekend on Facebook.